Interview with Ms Lau


Sara Nieto Abad

  1. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I am a British-born Chinese who grew up in a small town in Kent, South East of England.  At a young age, I decided to go on an explorative journey to learn more about my Chinese roots.  It wasn’t until I completed my degree and my first full-time teaching post that I had actually embarked on my new and exciting trip. To best learn about a culture and to fully understand the people who live there is to live there. So, I did. Destination: Hong Kong for the next twelve years.

  1. What made you pursue teaching?

At school, I had always found learning Science to be intriguing,  I was interested to know why things were happening around me, for example, how did a lift work, what was the purpose of adding salt on an icy road, why did I hear birds chirping loudly early in the morning but not at 3:20pm when I walked back home from school?  I didn’t find studying Science an easy subject at all, far from it. I had knowledgeable Science teachers, but they weren’t very good at engaging us. Despite this and for my continued innate interest in the subject, I soldiered on.  It was because of my poor teachers’ delivery of Science that made me want to do a better job than they did.

  1. What are your extracurricular interests and passions outside of teaching?

I enjoy playing badminton, but I am probably rather rusty now since I haven’t been regularly playing it since the pandemic started.  Once it is safe to do so, I will be back on the court and I can’t wait!  My passion is my family – I have a little monkey-of-a-daughter who keeps me on my toes and I am constantly learning all the time about her and how to be a good mama.

  1. What made you want to come and teach here at Marymount?

I lived in Hong Kong and in Prague, Czech Republic.  I love working in international schools, as the students and staff are so dynamic and full of fascinating stories about their different cultures, traditions and beliefs, I like to learn about what is going on around us.  When I’m teaching in an international school, I am very happy, as I feel our world is brought much closer together.  When I returned to live in the UK, I badly missed belonging to a global community, hence I applied to Marymount International London and I am excited to learn about you all.

  1. In your opinion, what have been the best and worst aspects of online learning so far?

The best aspects of online learning have been that despite living in a pandemic, we are still able to see and interact with each other.  I wonder, had I lived in a pandemic when I was a child, without the Internet invented, no mobile devices but just relying on the postal service, the phone line and the television, life may have been a lot harder.  I wonder how I would have continued being educated and stay sane without seeing my friends? 

The worst aspects of online learning have been the constrains in the smooth delivery of my lessons – with screens frozen, lagging, the many buttons to click, etc. is testing my patience, and I’m sure of my students too. I am unable to have my students have the opportunity to learn the practical skills that is so important in Science and to engage the more difficult concepts in a more practical sense.  In addition, I am learning that my body is not as flexibly responsive to a sitting position for longer than thirty minutes. I feel sorry for my family seeing and hearing my groans of back, neck, shoulder and headaches.

  1. If you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be?

Geeky, bubbly and kind.

  1. In your opinion, what has been the best scientific discovery ever made?

Wow, a really difficult question to answer, as there are so many. The aeroplane, space travel, fibre optics, genetic modification, antibiotics etc. To decide on ‘the best?’ What constitutes, ‘the best?’ I would say, a scientific discovery that has proven to be long-lasting, safe, sustainable and as ethically sound as possible would have to be the discovery of Sir Joseph Lister’s antiseptic methods to surgically treat patients.

  1. If you could travel anywhere right now, where would you go?

To escape, where there is no SARS-CoV-2?  Space!  If on planet Earth, to visit my family in Kent and in Hong Kong.

  1. If you were in a stranded island, which two teachers would you like to take with you?

Think survival, entertainment and kindness (I wouldn’t want to bring someone who would eat me!).  I would definitely take Ms Garcia-Suarez for the positive and entertaining elements of surviving.  The second person I would take would be Mr Dickinson, our Head Gardener.  He is tall, strong and knowledgeable in plants so he can build a shelter, chop down a tree to start a fire, climb the trees to pick some juicy coconuts and bananas, hunt for fish to cook by the fire whilst Ms Garcia-Suarez can entertain us with her rendition of ‘We will survive’ – hooray!

  1. If you could have any superpower, which superpower would you choose?

To read peoples’ minds.

  1. If you could have lunch with a person (dead or alive), who would you choose?

My father, who sadly died over 20 years ago.

  1. What piece of advice would you have liked to know as a student?

I am going to cheat a little in this last question.  If I may, I’d like to add a few pieces of advice here?

  • To keep an open mind throughout your life.
  • All the subjects you learn are important regardless of whether you enjoy learning them or not.
  • To keep pursuing what you enjoy doing, as this will bring happiness to your life.